Hendricks 41dB attenuator built and added to the mix

Hendricks attenuator in service
It's Friday and the IARU contest is tomorrow, I had been checking out the propagation throughout the week and things seem to be calming down. Well until yesterday afternoon and the sun released an X1.4 solar flare and if that was not enough a CME as well..... Oh did I mention the CME is headed in our direction as well. So far the solar-terrestrial data seems to be ok. What's not to bad about a proportional hiccup is that it affects all of us, not saying that is a good thing but in the contest  the playing field stays level. This past week my Hendricks 41dB attenuator came in. The assembly was straight forward and was done in no time it
Final testing
tested out ok and I was ready to start using it. The attenuator has to go in series with my antenna  I placed it in series with my antenna B port on the K3. Both feeds from the K3 (antenna A port and B port) go to a LDG DTS-4 switch. Here I am able to place the dipole antenna in series with either antenna Port A or B. I did this as I can set up the K3 to have different settings (power output, filter selections, ATU on or off... etc) for each antenna port. So I select either antenna A or B on the K3 and then on the DTS-4 I select either attenuator in or out.

Now when I want to use the attenuator it's a matter of selecting antenna B on the K3 and Ant B selected on the DTS-4 and I am ready to go with all the setting on the K3 done.
My goals for the IARU conest
  1. Have fun and enjoy!!
  2. Look for DXCC's I do not have so I can add to my  ARRL Diamond  count.
  3. See if I can beat my miles per watt record of 45,868 miles.
  4. Have fun and enjoy!!
Some of the extra parts
Back to the Hendricks attenuator for a moment..........the kit did come with some extra resistors and switch also the hookup wire was missing.  I also noticed that the color code for one of the resistors had a misprint in the manual. I emailed all this information to Hendricks last week and up to this point I have heard nothing. Also I did have what I thought to be a problem I emailed Hendricks about it. Their reply was "I don't know" and that was it!! Well I figured out the problem on my own but this being my first kit from Hendricks I was not impressed. Maybe this is just a one off many of you out there have had kits from this company what has been your experience?

Mike Weir, VE9KK, is a regular contributor to AmateurRadio.com and writes from New Brunswick, Canada. Contact him at [email protected].

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